The love for poker is quickly spreading to all corners of the world, and soon, respectable poker professionals will emerge from unknown locations. India, which has the second-largest population in the world, is also eager to be part of the poker family. However, the Indian Penal Code (IPC) prohibits poker activities in the land, but some poker enthusiasts got away to experience their gaming thirst despite the restrictions.
Detectives on Sunday busted a group of alleged poker players in two separate clubs within the Indian city of Kolkata. A police officer confirmed that the raid resulted in “14 persons, including Akhtar Parvez being arrested from two poker clubs.”
The Anti-rowdy unit, a special wing of the Kolkata Police Detective Department, was acting on a tip-off alert. The two raids were simultaneously conducted in two clubs located along different streets. The Joint Commissioner of Crime Murli Dhar revealed that the busting exercise happened in Park Street and the Shakespeare Sarani zone.
Notable among the nabbed individuals was Akhtar Parvez who owns Kolkata Biryani Chain. Parvez resides in Central Kolkata but was whisked from Friends Club situated in the southern parts of Camac Street. The detectives from Shakespeare Sarani Police Station apprehended the Parvez together with other six individuals at the said den. The authorities confirmed that Rs 94300 ($1330) was seized during the operation.
Elsewhere, the detectives continued with their onslaught on illegal gambling in Leo Club, along AJC Bose Road. The surprised operation claimed a further seven people, bringing the tally of illegal gambling suspect to 14. The police again seized Rs 90000 ($1268) worth of board money. While confirming the incident, the Joint Commissioner of Police in Beniapukur Police Station Murliadhar Sharma revealed that the authorities also confiscated playing cards.
The weekend operation realized a total of about $2700, considered to be the prize pool. The officers also seized about 400 poker chips and 12 packs of playing cards. Other items collected during the successful raid were a digital video recorder, together with its router. Besides, a document indicating details of financial transactions of each suspect was among other exhibits.
The fourteen men will be charged with the crime of illicit gambling in the Indian law courts. Poker is a banned gaming activity in India; Section 120B of the Criminal Conspiracy Law prohibits. Furthermore, Section 420 of the Indian Penal Code categorizes poker as a cheating activity.
The beleaguered Arsalan Restaurant Owner
Parvez falling among the suspects of illicit gambling activities is an additional predicament that has hit his family. He may have been doing the gambling act as leisure to ease the tension in his family only to end up as a victim of fate in the ordeal.
It was only last month that the Arsalan owner’s son, Raghib was arrested and charged with an offense of a possible homicide, but not to the magnitude of murder. While driving a luxury car, Raghib caused a fatal accident that claimed two lives and resulted in the injury of three other individuals. Prior to the arrest of Raghib, another son of Parvez had been nabbed in connection with a hit and disappearance allegation in the accident case.
Arsalan, whom the father used his name in the fancy restaurant was later released after police established that Raghib was the cause of the ugly event. However, Arsalan isn’t free from further charges with the police booking him with the offense of giving false information to protect the offender. Earlier on, the suspected brothers’ maternal uncle had been arrested for hosting Raghib.